What to Know About Buying a Second Home

Make a clear plan and an all-inclusive budget before you set your sights on buying a second home.
Kate Wood
By Kate Wood 
Updated
Edited by Beth Buczynski

Some or all of the mortgage lenders featured on our site are advertising partners of NerdWallet, but this does not influence our evaluations, lender star ratings or the order in which lenders are listed on the page. Our opinions are our own. Here is a list of our partners.

Buying a second home is a big upgrade, whether you're laying claim to your favorite vacation spot or taking a first step into real estate investment.

But the costs involved with purchasing and maintaining a second home add up fast, and vary considerably depending on how you use the property. Mortgage options will also be based on your plans for using your second home. Here's how to make sure you're ready.

Mortgage loans from our partners

Rocket Mortgage - PURCHASE logo
Check Rate

on Rocket Mortgage

Rocket Mortgage

5.0

NerdWallet rating 
Rocket Mortgage - PURCHASE logo

5.0

NerdWallet rating 
Min. credit score 
580

Min. down payment 
3.5%

Check Rate

on Rocket Mortgage

Better - PURCHASE logo
Check Rate

on Better

Better

4.5

NerdWallet rating 
Better - PURCHASE logo

4.5

NerdWallet rating 
Min. credit score 
620

Min. down payment 
3%

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on Better

NBKC - PURCHASE logo
Check Rate

on NBKC

NBKC

4.5

NerdWallet rating 
NBKC - PURCHASE logo

4.5

NerdWallet rating 
Min. credit score 
620

Min. down payment 
3%

Check Rate

on NBKC

New American Funding - PURCHASE logo
Check Rate

on New American Funding

New American Funding

4.5

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New American Funding - PURCHASE logo

4.5

NerdWallet rating 
Min. credit score 
500

Min. down payment 
3.5%

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on New American Funding

Veterans United - PURCHASE logo
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on Veterans United

Veterans United

4.5

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Veterans United - PURCHASE logo

4.5

NerdWallet rating 
Min. credit score 
620

Min. down payment 
0%

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on Veterans United

Mortgage loans from our partners

Rocket Mortgage - PURCHASE logo
Check Rate

on Rocket Mortgage

Rocket Mortgage

5.0

NerdWallet rating 
Rocket Mortgage - PURCHASE logo

5.0

NerdWallet rating 
Min. credit score 
580

Min. down payment 
3.5%

Check Rate

on Rocket Mortgage

Better - PURCHASE logo
Check Rate

on Better

Better

4.5

NerdWallet rating 
Better - PURCHASE logo

4.5

NerdWallet rating 
Min. credit score 
620

Min. down payment 
3%

Check Rate

on Better

NBKC - PURCHASE logo
Check Rate

on NBKC

NBKC

4.5

NerdWallet rating 
NBKC - PURCHASE logo

4.5

NerdWallet rating 
Min. credit score 
620

Min. down payment 
3%

Check Rate

on NBKC